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From the foods we eat and the houses we construct, to our religious practices and political organisation, to who we can marry and the types of games we teach our children, the diversity of cultural practices in the world is astounding. Our ability to visualise and understand this diversity is limited by the ways it has been documented and shared: on a culture-by-culture basis, in locally-told stories or difficult-to-access repositories. One of the early achievements of the DLCE was the construction of D-PLACE, or the Database of Places, Language, Culture, and Environment. D-PLACE brings together the dispersed corpus of information describing human cultural diversity linking that cultural variation to language phylogenies and fine-grained environmental data. The database was initially described in Kirby et al. 2016, when it contained only two major cross-cultural datasets: Murdock’s Ethnographic Atlas and Binford’s Hunter-Gatherer dataset. Since then, we have added the Standard Cross-Cultural Sample and Jorgensen’s Western-North American database. We are currently digitising and cleaning other cross-cultural datasets so that they can be added to D-PLACE.

D-PLACE database

D-PLACE is hosted here.


Project Leader:

Database Manager:

DLCE collaborators:

External collaborators:

  • Carlos Botero (St. Louis)
  • Fiona Jordan (Bristol)
  • Kathryn Kirby

D-PLACE Publications

  • tba


Please send any D-PLACE related queries to us here.